Sunday's thunderstorms dropped hail as large as 2 inches in diameter and whipped up winds of 60 mph as the storms pushed through eastern Nebraska and western Iowa.
Strong winds near Shenandoah, Iowa, caused extensive damage to a barn's roof, a weather spotter reported to the National Weather Service. The 2-inch hail was reported near Auburn, Neb., about 4:30 p.m.
The rain came in rounds Sunday, starting overnight and returning in the late afternoon and evening. The Omaha area escaped most of the storms' intensity.
There were two reports of tornadoes touching down in Iowa Sunday night, including one near Huxley, about 20 miles north of Des Moines, and one in Grundy County, which is northeast of Des Moines. There were no immediate reports of major damage or injuries.
Storms Saturday night and early Sunday caused some damage to trees and irrigation systems in western Nebraska, according to a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in North Platte. No major damage was reported.
Downed trees and power lines were reported in Nebraska's Cass County.
Steve Travis, a meteorologist with AccuWeather, said a “pretty strong” upper-level storm system spinning in place above the Dakotas was responsible for heavy rains and winds across eastern Nebraska. That means there's a good chance thunderstorms will return this afternoon.
“The atmosphere is still so ripe that it looks like the thunderstorms will pick up again (this) afternoon,” Travis said. Those storms will be more spotty than Sunday's widespread storms, he said.
Some of the stronger storms could produce winds gusting up to 35 or 40 mph and as much as a half-inch of rain per hour, Travis said.
“Golf ball size hail is possible and some tornadoes could even pop up, but I think that's more likely south of the Omaha area down into Kansas,” he said.
The current weather pattern is more commonly associated with March and April than late May, Travis said. The late spring, however, has pushed back Nebraska's storm season.
“Everything's just off a month or so,” he said. “It appears that is going to continue through the summer.”
Travis said he expects the storm system to push eastward by Tuesday, leaving behind dry conditions but lingering clouds for Tuesday and Wednesday. High temperatures, he said, should be in the mid-70s on Tuesday, and the upper 60s on Wednesday and Thursday.
Friday appeared to be one of the best days of the week, the meteorologist said, with sunshine, low humidity and highs in the 70s.
Highs in the mid-70s were expected for both Saturday and Sunday with a chance of scattered showers or thunderstorms on Sunday.
This report contains material from the Associated Press.
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